Indians all across the world have been in celebration mode as The Elephant Whisperers and SS Rajamouli’s RRR won an Oscar each in Los Angeles on March 13. The Elephant Whisperers is a short documentary film about the heartwarming story of a couple who end up with an orphaned baby elephant, Raghu, to look after.
A large number of tourists thronged Mudumalai Theppakadu elephant camp to catch a glimpse of the baby elephant made famous by the Oscar-winning Indian documentary. The documentary competed for the honour with fellow nominees Haul Out, How Do You Measure A Year?, The Martha Mitchell Effect, and Stranger At The Gate.
Mudumalai, Tamil Nadu | After 'The Elephant Whisperers' won #Oscars award for Best Documentary Short Film, people from different parts of the country visit Theppakadu Elephant Camp to witness the Oscar-winning elephant Raghu (13.03) pic.twitter.com/75vycru7Qg— ANI (@ANI) March 14, 2023
The film’s plot revolves around Bomman and Bellie, a real-life couple from South India, who devote their lives to caring for two orphaned baby elephants in Tamil Nadu’s Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, forging a family like no other that tests the barrier between the human and the animal world.
“It is such a great moment. It’s a pleasure to be here. The elephant is my favourite animal and the fact that the film won an Oscar does make me delighted and excited,” said a tourist.
"I am from London, we visited here and got to know that two baby elephants from here won an Oscar last night. It is nice to see them, and I really enjoyed seeing them. Elephants are my favourite animal. I am very lucky to see them today," said a tourist Grace (13.03) pic.twitter.com/nc9Gjn3yyJ— ANI (@ANI) March 14, 2023
The director of the Tamil documentary, Kartiki Gonsalves, and producer Guneet Monga stepped up to collect the golden statuette at the 95th Academy Awards on Monday.
In her winning speech, Gonsalves said, “I stand here today to speak on the sacred bond between us and our natural world. For the respect of indigenous communities. For entities towards other living beings, we share our space with. And finally for coexistence. Thank you to the academy for recognising our film highlighting indigenous people and animals. To Netflix for believing in the power of this film. To Guneet my Producer and my entire team and finally, to my mother, father and sister who are up there somewhere, you’re the centre of my universe. To my motherland India.”
This is not the first time that Guneet Monga has won an Oscar. In 2019, Monga’s documentary Period. End of Sentence bagged an Oscar in the ‘Documentary Short Subject’ category.